Volterra: a tuscan jewel near San Gimignano

volterra-le-balzeFor those visiting spend a few days in San Gimignano is good knowing that, in the surroundings of this beautiful town, there are lots of wonderful places that are worth a visit. These include the outstanding town of Volterra.

Volterra and San Gimignano,a journey into the history and authentic traditions

To catch the eye of the viewer, even before you get to Volterra, is the beautiful scenery that can be seen on the road coming from  San Gimignano. The beautiful hills are the backdrop to a series of landscapes that make this trip one of the most coveted by the fans of two wheels too.

Once in Volterra you can start to discover this little gem of of Etruscan origin located in the heart of Tuscany. Thanks to its beauty it has been selected as the location by some great Italian directors such as Visconti and Olmi as well by American film industry: recently some scenes of the  Twilight Saga were filmed here.

volterra-via-centraleWhat to see in Volterra

Almost the entire historic center is enclosed by the city walls, which were built throughout 1200 until being completed in 1300 with the completion of the defensive systems in the vicinity of the historical city gates. Do not miss the Cathedral of Santa Maria Asssunta, the main place of worship in the city which was rebuilt after the earthquake of 1117 that destroyed most of the town. Nearby there is also the Baptistery of San Giovanni, which in addition to its architectural structure must be admired for the 16th-century altar and the baptismal marble font.Volterra

In the homonymous square well worth a visit to the Palazzo dei Priori in which is possible to admire, in addition to the beautiful tower, the ancient coats of arms housed in the Hall of the Great Council. Another great point of interest is the Roman theater that brings to an ancient past of the city: it is dated, in fact, to the first century BC but was brought to light only in the 50s of last century. Reknown for its towers, the Medici Fortress is another important attraction in the city, built at the behest of the powerful Lorenzo de ‘Medici.volterra-anfiteatro-romano

If you are looking for activities and places to visit during your stay in San Gimignano, Volterra is definitely one of the most recommended. The distance between the two cities is about 30 km for a total of less than forty minute drive and is perfect for a fantastic day trip.